This morning was one of my earliest ones so far. Apart from the fact that I was up really early in the morning to take some pictures of the stars and of the seminary at night…well, that’s another story. I got some fun pictures and it was worth getting a little less sleep.
We had to leave the house at 6:30 to walk to the Wilson home for breakfast, so Stephen and I slept in until about 6:24. We quick got ready and joined the girls outside for the 15-minute jaunt to the Wilson’s.
Beth greeted us with an array of food that included banana nut bread, papaya, cheese, guava jam, milk, and coffee (ach!). We quickly ate the yummy food, and the six of us piled into the Wilson’s small car. I sat up front while Stephen, Olivia, Sarah, and Danae squeezed into the back.
We stopped in Crato quickly to get some crackers and cookies and other snack food and then Beth drove us to the other side of the city where we stopped by Igreja Batista Regular Maranata, the church with which the Lounsbrough’s and Wilson’s worked several years ago.
The plan was to meet some people from the church and hike up into the mountains with them. Well, we got there and they weren’t there yet, so we just stood there and waited. Meanwhile Stephen climbed over the fence and into the churchyard, looking really sketchy as a car drove by.
Eventually Stephen and Sarah walked down the street to meet some old friends (in both senses of the word). One lady finally came on a motorcycle and told Beth that the group was going to meet us at the base of the mountain, so we got back into the car and kept driving.
Sure enough, they were there! Our final destination was cliff at the top of the mountain at the end of a long trail, so we considered just driving to the top and leaving our cars at the beginning of the trail. However, the others didn’t want to leave their vehicles up there, so instead we started the long trek up the mountain by foot.
We walked up the side of a wide, two-lane road, trying to stay in the shade as much as possible. This was technically easier than walking up a steep mountain trail like the day before, but the road was still fairly steep and long, so I got more of a workout then I had the day before.
It took us a little over a half hour to get to the top, and the roadside view on the way up was quite intriguing. There were pretty flowers, massive red rock faces, and some sneak peaks of the valley below which we would see in entirety at the top.
The trail at the top plateaued, so we walked most of the rest of the way on level ground, a nice relief. It reminded me of the week in 2011 when I went to Algonquin Provincial Park in Ontario, Canada and canoed and hiked for a week. Just walking through the woods, not knowing where you’ll end up. But walking through God’s creation is so refreshing.
We walked along through woods for about half an hour and eventually came upon a trail that descended to the edge of a cliff- the moment which we had all anticipated.
The view…was impressive. I can’t even describe it. It was definitely worth the hike.
I really don’t know how to describe it without simply saying that once again we were on the edge of a cliff, overlooking the valley containing the cities of Crato, Juazeiro, and Barbalha in the far distance. The closer you come to death, the better your view of God and the more amazing He appears. Way up there on that cliff, we were much closer to potential death, but we also had a much greater view of God’s creation, displaying His power.
Of course, Stephen and I got out as far as we safely could on the rocks and had the girls take pictures of us. Taking pictures of the view itself was kind of disappointing because it didn’t show up satisfactorily on my camera. It just isn’t the same in a picture as it is in real life!
After several minutes of photos we walked partway back on the trail and ate our snacks in a clearing. I had a small packet of peanuts, a couple crackers, and a couple cookies, and that was enough for me!
We walked back to the end of the trail, walked back down the side of the mountain, and returned to the cars. Walking back down actually seemed a little harder because it uses different muscles. Rather than working your legs to push you up, you’re constantly using your feet at an angle to keep you from going down to fast or falling forward. Anyway, it was also a good workout.
At the bottom we bid farewell to the others and drove back home. What did we do? We crashed on our beds again, just like the day before. We eventually woke up for supper, enjoying classic grilled cheese sandwiches with tomato soup.
After supper I got to go to the Wednesday night Bible study again, having missed it last week during the Semana de Musica. It was good to see the family again, and unfortunately it was the last time I would see them. Next week I’ll be busy with our English retreat at the seminary, and after that I’ll be in a different part of Brazil.
At the end of the Bible study we took a picture of the family and said good-bye. I sure am going to miss going back to see them! It will be exciting to see how God bears fruit through that ministry.
Back at the house, we spent the evening getting things ready for the rest of the week. At one point Danae asked me to go get a frog out of her bathroom, so I went over there and caught it and also got some good pictures of it. I’ve never caught a frog before, so now I can say that I have!
It was my last evening with Stephen because he was leaving with Sarah and Olivia on Thursday. Sadness. 🙁 But it sure was a good last day with them!